A Very Good Point on Defensive Sprays

David Rittgers makes an important observation about defensive sprays: be sure to check state and local laws before you decide whether it’s right for you. Virginia, shockingly makes misusing pepper spray a felony. This is a monumentally bad law, and one that, fortunately, I don’t think many states have. For most states, unlawful use of pepper spray would be misdemeanor assault.

10 thoughts on “A Very Good Point on Defensive Sprays”

  1. In Massachusetts, Pepper Spray is considered a firearm for all legal purposes; possession, carry, brandishing, and use.

    New Jersey is almost as bad.

  2. Do the words of that Virginia statute definitely cover OC pepper spray? It’s not 100% clear from the text.

    Nevertheless, I wouldn’t be shocked to learn that case law so construed it.

  3. It’s the same way with knife laws. You could be permitted to concealed or open carry a gun, but a 3 inch knife could get you locked up. Specifically to PA, I think Philly has some stupid limit on knife lengths or how it folds, so I don’t take mine there. It’s an assisted opening SOG, so it’s probably some deadly ‘switch blade’ to them -_-

  4. Not something I would risk though, especially if I were to open carry there. They hate it and I bet they would love to nail people with something.

  5. Philly’s law uses VERY broad language to define any knife or cutting instrument that “could be used as a weapon” as a prohibited weapon, and to top it all off, there is a MINIMUM of 90 days in jail if you’re unlucky enough to get arrested and charged.

    I’m pretty sure tasers are completely illegal in Philly and pepper sprays probably are too.

    It’s scary to think that just about every LTCF holder in Philly could probably get their permit revoked for good just for having an ordinary pocket knife in their pocket during a traffic stop.

  6. AFAIK NJ doesn’t require a permit to purchase defensive sprays; though the regs concerning sam eare otherwise pretty onerous.

    Another piece of cognitive dissonance from the anti-freedom camp. If they don’t want us carrying deadly weapons, why restrict less than lethal alternatives as much or more than firearms?

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